Abiding in Him... Devotional Day 3


If you’re following our Abiding Devotional this week we are on Day 3 today… and we want to say THANK YOU!

As we are going through the devotional this week from the retreat in Italy last month we are also sharing photos and moments from it with you. We hope you enjoy getting a sneak peek into what we do and what it looks like during our time together with everyone on an Art & Faith Creative Retreat.

So in that spirit…

We decided to give YOU a chance to win something from that retreat too!

Our GIVEAWAY is a prize package of the class kits Ruth Chou Simons and I taught in Italy!


This is BIG! I’m not saying that just because I think they were GREAT classes, (although they were!) but because I LOVED learning from Ruth and these are some great items to have! She had a special art “supply roll” made for your pens and paint brushes, she wrote and printed two workbooks for Modern Calligraphy and Watercolor Art. She gave us all a beautiful watercolor palette and some of her favorite paint brushes and pens to have! You’ll also get a handmade leather Traveler’s Notebook from my class that was made IN Bellagio, Italy in a joint collaboration with my friend who owns a gorgeous leather shop in town. It will come with a pack of fun ephemera and stickers to use in your inserts for the TN. You’ll also get a document I wrote on Bible Journaling, the “Basics of Bible Journaling” that will help you use all of these supplies in your Bible Devotional time. So I truly think you are going to LOVE this prize package!

We are so excited about this GIVEAWAY and can’t wait to announce the winner THIS SATURDAY, July 27th 2019! AND… We will have TWO WINNERS… we will pick one person off of THIS blog post and one from the Instagram post! We know not everyone has IG so you can either enter both places or just one, it’s up to you! The last day of the devotional (this Saturday) will coincide with the announcement of the WINNERS, so all you have to do is the following:

  1. Make sure you are following us on IG at artandfaithcreative

  2. Leave a comment on THIS BLOG POST about which retreat would be your “dream retreat”

  3. Sign up for our newsletter (we do not send this out very often) right here on our website

  4. Come back on Saturday to see if you’ve WON!


Side Note: If you want to skip all this in the “middle” part, you can just go straight down to the bottom of this post for the devotional.

Here we are on the first Sunday together with everyone on the pergola in Bellagio. We had a “mini” church service talking about Abiding and having Troy Simons speak on the topic and lead us in worship.

It was such a beautiful week and the weather was just perfect! I’m so thankful when we have great weather at our retreats because it can be a bother to have rain or hot weather interfere with some of our plans. But this retreat was about one of the best weeks for weather you can get and we were all SO thankful for that.

After our devotional time outside we gave everyone time along to “be still” and get in the Word and journal what was on their heart. Then we went inside to our gorgeous event room and had our first class. I started the week with a class in Bible Journaling and took them through the basics as well as some prompts and music to get them started. I absolutely LOVE teaching Bible Journaling because I feel it is a form of worship and a way to combine your love of being CREATIVE with our love of our CREATOR!


So you can count on coming to our BARN in Colorado once it’s finished for more classes on Bible Journaling all things Art & Faith! Or…join us right here in Bellagio for a special time together with other believers who love the Lord and want to draw closer to Him. It’s an incredible ministry that we feel called to, and it’s simply to love and serve on the people who join us and share the LOVE of Jesus with! We continue to pray about what that looks like each year and how God wants us to go about it,

But back to our retreat in Bellagio…

After our Bible Journaling class and lunch, we had a little break before we introduced them to one of my dearest friends in Bellagio… the PRINCESS of Bellagio… Rita!


Rita is full of passion for “her lake” and she is a very well known tour guide on the lake. She has been a friend for years and has become friends with EVERYONE who has gone on our retreats…because you can’t help but LOVE Rita! So she took everyone on a tour and shared her love of Bellagio by taking them into her church, taking them around the town explaining the history, showing them her beautiful village, telling them the stories that make up this little lakeside town and took them to the tranquil gardens of Villa Melzi.


They all came back telling us how great she was and how much they loved her. And if you’ve been to a retreat here with us, then you felt the same way. She is a JOY and we are blessed to have her be a a part of our retreats. She is one of the reasons, and there are many, that we feel Bellagio is a place the Lord has called us to do these retreats. We do them all over the world and will continue to go where God leads, but Bellagio Italy is a place we know the Lord has lead us. It’s a very long story we will share some day, but knowing that we have been blessed to come here every year for the last 10 years, get to know the people, include them into our retreats so that YOU know them too. It then becomes not just a trip you are going on but a PLACE & PEOPLE who you get to know… we feel it makes these retreats even more special, and we know there’s a purpose for that.

Oh, and that night we ate at the Top Chef of Italy’s Restaurant right in Bellagio! I don’t really talk about the FOOD on our retreats, but I’ve been told by the ladies that is could also be a “Food & Wine” Tour with all the great places we eat at.


I think I’ve gone a little LONG today… so I will leave you here for now. Tomorrow we will share more and bring you Day 4 of our devotional. In the meantime, we pray you are enjoying spending time in the Word with this devotional and would love to pray for you specifically if you want to leave us a message via the CONTACT page. Know that we are always here for you.

Here’s our Devotional - Day 3:

Abide in Him - Day 3

Today let’s look at the word DWELL and how that applies to abiding.

Dwell : 1 : to live or stay as a permanent resident; reside. 2 : to live or continue in a given condition or state: 3 : to dwell in happiness.

The word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.” John 1:14

1. Abiding in His love.  John 15:9 talks about abiding in Christ’s love.  “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.” Christ’s love for us is so amazing, just look at how it has been proven to us on the Cross!  As we are transformed by His love and dwell (live and reside) in that love, we are also called to show that love to others.  That’s not always easy to do, I know, but when we are abiding and depending on the Holy Spirit to help us, we can simply obey God’s Word and see evidence of His fruit (and love) in our lives. (John 15:10-14.)

2. Dwelling at “home” in Christ.
To abide in Christ is not only to remain in Him, but also to dwell in Him.  The Greek word for abide means “to make home.” To dwell in Him means to make your home in Him. Isn’t that so comforting?  To know that Christ is HOME.  Abiding in Christ is not only letting God’s Word dwell in us richly (Colossians 3:15) and letting the Holy Spirit fill us up daily,  (Ephesians 5:18) but also to be fully settled in Him.  For those who have moved from house to house, or like us, are renting a place while we wait for our home to be built, this feeling of knowing you are “settled” brings feelings of relief and joy! But that is what we can have NOW as we dwell and reside right there with Christ, no matter where life brings us or what trials face us. We are HOME in Christ Jesus!

3. Abiding in Christ, with the help of the Holy Spirit. 
I think the church has not done a good job of explaining the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  It’s a whole other topic I’d love to talk about, but for now I will just recommend you add “Alive in the Spirit” by A.W. Tozer to your reading list.  When we are daily abiding in Christ’s Word and dwelling in Him AS the Spirit fills us, we will see a difference in our lives.  A. W. Tozer says this:  "If anyone is going to be blessed by God and used by Him, it will begin with a mighty infilling of the Holy Spirit in their life.  From that point on, they are no longer in control, but the Holy Spirit is working in and through them.”

Romans 5:5 says:  “God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” 

Ask yourself today:

  1. How does it make you feel to know that Christ is your HOME? You can feel settled in Him…

  2. What are some ways in which you can make sure you are abiding/dwelling in Christ daily?

  3. Read John 14:16-17.

  4. Find a quiet spot to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you today.

  5. Journal or draw your picture of HOME in Christ.

Don’t forget to ENTER the GIVEAWAY! Have a GREAT day.


Laura McCollough